Tuesday, October 18, 2011

knitting is not for the faint of heart.

if you want to knit, you gotta dig in. 
it is not for anyone who is just thinking that they want a nice scarf. 
it is for folks that have some gumption in their stride. 
they mean what they mean even if they don't know what that is. 

i have been trying to teach a small group of ladies some tricks.
they are part of a small and almost hidden club tucked in a little from the main street. 
the building outside looks demure.
inside it is opulent. 
there are murals that are both hand painted and wrap the rooms. 
not only are there the gorgeous murals,
but also there are lively colored silken hand knotted oriental rugs.
the kind that you see once and realize that they are the real deal.
they are the kind that shimmer as light skims their surfaces.
i had to suborn my squealing inside of myself, in order not to be found out.
{as so easily impressed and overwhelmed by beauty}
really, the place is a hodgepodge of levels and contiguous rooms.
it has age and utterly authentic patina.
the kind that only regular polishing and dust removal can attain.
as one enters, you see
 a small collection of cups.
i think they are old wedgewood.
they are set into a display on shelves that are built in between the void created
between joists of that wall.
it is an adorable display. 
there is a stone floor in the kitchen. 
 a dining room 
a library. 
and i could go on and on about how remarkable i find it.
it is just the first floor that i have seen. 
and all of it is worth looking at much more closely. 

in general the members of this club take classes in this gem of a building. 
it is across the street from 
a RISD hall and the RISD museum
the ATHENAEUM Library
the State and/or Supreme Courthouses
(i may have this part inaccurate. sorry if that is the case)
the location is ideal. 
the building is a statement or remembrance of how folks lived during the last century. 
it was with elegance and nonchalance.
i  remain mindful that it represents only a small population though.

i answered a request on facebook. 
an acquaintance of mine shouted out for a knitting instructor
for the club. 
i answered the call, on a lark mostly. 
luckily for me, in spite of not having knit for the past 5 years, 
i was qualified. 
or so i thought. 

i am very confident of my knitting skills. 
i thought that there was little likelihood
 of being asked to show anyone one specific technique that is a
middle to advanced style of knitting.
 it is entrelac. 
i was sooo wrong. 
but this entire topic was covered in another posting... 
so i dare not continue to repeat my boring old self. 
it took me two classes before i was willing to give entrelac a good try
it took about an hour or two to get the hang of it.
and yes, i felt the gauntlet had been tossed down. 
in fact, it is remarkably easy and fun to knit. 
so i did an evening of easy and fun.

backing up now, i thought i would get some beginner knitters. 
what i got was 4 very different kinds and levels of knitters.
by week 4, i was certain that i would be fired.
what i was trying to do was not going at all well.
it was because i felt that i had been hired under false assumptions.
and perhaps they had all been mine.

i was in a royal funk last night.
 i thought that perhaps it was due to the 
upcoming night of monday night free for all with the knitters.
it is like herding cats with these ladies.
they have all been very accomplished in many ways in their lives.
and had a variety of interesting as well as painful experiences. 
on a good night, there is often the sensation of a wild melee and a lively conversation. 
more sedate evenings are so, since not everyone is able to come to the class. 
tonight i felt good though.  
the president of the club was in brainstorm mode. 
we talked a lot about why one of her recent projects was not admitted to the in-house show. 

the best part of this discussion was that we were able to talk.
 get closer to some of the earlier beginning 
techniques and concepts.
and insert a gross overview of some essential concepts. 
 perhaps this was a response to the smaller class size and my grabbing ahold of it.
they have a lot to talk about generally between themselves.
they have known one another for years.
it is pretty interesting to watch how their chemistry works.
what i found was that missing one personality,
we could get to the meat of the issues.
when that one lady is in the house, she overwhelms everyone.
me included.
i know understand the dynamics more and will be wrestling my position into
a more authoritative place.
i feel like i can offer them things now...
the ones i would have if i had pushed my agenda from the start.

there has been theme recently.
one where i feel like i have swum into the slipstream current of an ocean.
it is a nice ride and all, but you do need to have a feeling of where you want to go
as well as how you want to travel while riding in it.
just a little bit of "finding nemo" if you know what i mean.

anyways, progress is never easily made.
and i know i always express growing pains while i test myself.
perhaps the funk is just some growing?
growing into a smaller household population.
growing into greater financial participation in my family.
growing into acceptance of having mothered my children into neo adulthood.
or just growing as a person.
i dunno.
i am gonna keep challenging myself and all the little pieces of each day.
i remain hopeful that the knitting part will come together at its conclusion.
i hope i will figure out how much milk to buy when we are now 3 instead of 5.
i hope.
and while i do that, i will knit my entrelac scarf.
it seems a good learning curve to follow.


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